Thursday, July 7, 2011

Educational Note

Many of BOiS pieces are created with genuine 925 sterling silver. Sterling Silver rings have been known to cause peoples fingers to turn green. It is a reaction with the copper content in Sterling Silver and caused by an individuals body chemistry. It is more often seen in people with very sweaty hands. Sterling Silver contains 92.5% Silver and 7.5% Copper. One of BOiS hallmark 925 stands for Sterling Silver. The "green finger effect" does not necessarily mean that the material is not pure Sterling Silver.

If a person has a natural high acidity level in his or her skin, it is possible for his or her finger to "turn green" from Sterling Silver jewellery, especially when the weather is hot and humid. It does not necessarily mean that the jewellery is plated or not pure. The green is actually caused by oxidation, and all silver will oxidize. It is the same reason Sterling Silver jewellery has a tarnished look. There are some cheap jewellery items that cause the same effect because many of them contain Nickel. As for Nickel, it is not poisonous in small quantities but it can provoke a reaction in people allergic to Nickel.

The "green finger effect" may also be an allergic reaction to alloy elements in Sterling Silver or Gold. In some cases, the alloys, used to make jewellery more durable, may react with your body chemistry, causing a harmless green or black discoloration on the skin. It can be easily removed with soap and water. For this reason, many Sterling Silver jewellery and White Gold jewellery is plated with Rhodium. Rhodium provides a defensive layer and prevents the reaction on allergic skins. 

Other than allergic reasons; lotions, soap or chemicals that come into contact with your skin on an everyday basis may casuse the same reaction.

If you have this allergic reaction, I would recommend to buy rings which have been rhodium plated. Rhodium plating is durable and gives a bright silverish, platinum sheen look. I know that most of Swarovski jewellery items are Rhodium plated with base metal under. Another solution is to clean your Sterling Silver jewellery as often as possible with polishing cloth. After about a week or two, the reaction should stop occurring.

Another alternative to Sterling Silver jewellery is stainless steel jewelry. It is clean, modern, non-hypoallergenic, untarnishable, extremely strong, and comfortable.

As for BOiS, most of the pieces are created in genuine 925 Sterling Silver. They are hardly Rhodium plated, unless requested upon, because it gives me flexibility to play with different surface finishes. And, as some of you may know, Satin finish is my favourite finish which cannot be accomplished when plated.

Thank you for reading!

by BOiS


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